The Dumb, Crazy, Mixed-Up Day


This is a change-about story. Color, then cut out the squares at the end of it and put them in a small paper sack or other container that you can’t see into, then read the story aloud with a friend or your family. Whenever you come to a blank, fill it in by drawing a word out of the sack.

From the time Benjamin woke up that morning, everything seemed to go wrong. To begin with, when he decided to wear ____________________ to school, he couldn’t find it because it was hidden under ____________________. So he had to put on ____________________, instead, even though it was upside down and inside out.

“It’s not funny!” Benjamin muttered grumpily when his reflection in the mirror showed ____________________ draped around his neck and ____________________ hanging down in front. He sighed. This was going to be a dumb, crazy, mixed-up day.

Just then Mother called, “Hurry, Benjamin, so you’ll have time to eat ____________________. Your teacher will be pleased if you have ____________________ for breakfast.”

“I’ll be late if I eat that!” Benjamin exclaimed. He snatched ____________________ out of the refrigerator and dashed out the front door, putting on ____________________ to keep him warm.

“Wait!” Mother called. “You forgot ____________________ and money for ____________________!”

But it was too late. Already ____________________ bus was rounding the corner and coming to a stop. Most of the seats were filled by ____________________, ____________________, ____________________, ____________________, and ____________________. In place of ____________________, the regular driver, ____________________ sat behind the wheel.

“Climb aboard!” he snapped, sounding just like ____________________. “We can’t wait here all day!”

With a great clashing of ____________________, the driver raced down the street, narrowly missing ____________________ and a lady pushing ____________________ in a baby buggy. In the back of the bus, a chorus made up of ____________________, ____________________, ____________________, ____________________, and ____________________ suddenly began to sing. There was no doubt about it—it was another dumb, crazy, mixed-up day!

At school, things were even worse. During math, the teacher asked, “Benjamin, what is nine times seven?” and he answered ____________________. During social studies, Benjamin tried to hand in ____________________ for his homework, and it spilled all over ____________________ on the teacher’s desk. And at noon he found that Mother had packed ____________________ and ____________________ for his lunch. “Oh, no!” he groaned. “When will this dumb, crazy, mixed-up day ever end?”

After lunch period it was time to practice with the band, one of Benjamin’s favorite classes. But when he reached in to take his horn out of the case, he found ____________________ there instead.

“Come, come, Benjamin,” the band leader scolded, “Whoever heard of playing that in a school band? If your horn isn’t here, borrow ____________________.”

Poor Benjamin was so embarrassed that he bolted out the door and ran blindly down the hall. On the way he bumped into ____________________ and ____________________. At last the bell sounded, and school was over for the day. Benjamin rubbed his jaw with ____________________ and sighed with relief.

After ____________________ bus took him home, Benjamin hurried into the family’s cheery kitchen. At least Mother always set out a delicious after-school snack. But not this time! There on the counter was ____________________ to eat and a glass with ____________________ in it!

Benjamin lost his appetite. “I’ll just put on ____________________ and go to bed,” he declared. “And I’ll stay there until this dumb, crazy, mixed-up day is over.”

And that’s what he did.

[Word List]

a purple puppy

a squashed skateboard

a green giraffe

a brass button

a prickly pelican

a limp lantern

a cuddly kitten

a wilted watermelon

a zany zebra

a dozing dodo

a pink porcupine

a leaping lizard

a helpless hippo

a jogging jackal

a snoopy skunk

a squeaky saxophone

a broken bicycle

a cinnamon camel

a strawberry soda

a toothless tiger

a sassy snake

an orange octopus

an angry alligator

a happy hobo

a nippy noodle

a crispy cracker

a leaky lemon

a rattling rollerskate

a grinning gorilla

a bouncing broom

a prancing pony

a dippy donkey

a frisky frog

some jiggling gelatin

a bent bucket

a polka-dot pumpkin

a croaking company

a rusty rainspout

a friendly fox

a dimpled doughnut

a quirky quince

an exotic explorer

[illustrations] Illustrated by Shauna Mooney